Counseling Psychologists

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About the Job

Assess and evaluate individuals' problems through the use of case history, interview, and observation and provide individual or group counseling services to assist individuals in achieving more effective personal, social, educational, and vocational development and adjustment.

It is also Called

  • University Counselor
  • Therapist
  • Staff Psychologist at University Counseling Center
  • Staff Psychologist and Assessment Coordinator
  • Staff Psychologist
  • Sexual Assault Response Coordinator
  • Sexual Assault Counselor
  • Senior Staff Psychologist, Counseling Service
  • Senior Staff Psychologist
  • Psychotherapist-Counselor
View All

What They Do

  • Conduct research to develop or improve diagnostic or therapeutic counseling techniques.
  • Select, administer, and interpret psychological tests to assess intelligence, aptitudes, abilities, or interests.
  • Provide consulting services, including educational programs, outreach programs, or prevention talks to schools, social service agencies, businesses, or the general public.
  • Refer clients to specialists or to other institutions for noncounseling treatment of problems.
  • Evaluate the results of counseling methods to determine the reliability and validity of treatments.
  • Consult with other professionals, agencies, or universities to discuss therapies, treatments, counseling resources or techniques, and to share occupational information.
  • Analyze data, such as interview notes, test results, or reference manuals, to identify symptoms or to diagnose the nature of clients' problems.
  • Advise clients on how they could be helped by counseling.
  • Supervise interns, clinicians in training, and other counselors.
  • Develop therapeutic and treatment plans based on clients' interests, abilities, or needs.

Interests

People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: SIA.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Social interests, but also prefer Investigative and Artistic environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Relationships, but also value Achievement and Working Conditions in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Therapy and Counseling - Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.
  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Sociology and Anthropology - Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

Education Required

Most of these occupations require graduate school. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D. (law degree).

Wages

In 2016, the average annual wage in Pennsylvania was $72,640 with most people making between $41,990 and $101,980

Outlook

1.57%
avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 7,440 people in Pennsylvania. It is projected that there will be 8,610 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 117 openings due to growth and about 163 replacement openings for approximately 280 total annual openings.



Pennsylvania Department of Education